“2013 is proving to be the year of the console hardware refresh,” he said, speaking to the BBC.
“Although it’s exciting, it’s not nearly as exciting as when the Xbox 360 exploded onto the gaming scene just over seven years ago.”
“Back then, the 360 represented a huge leap forward in gaming,” he added, “with a tangible increase in performance and fantastic multiplayer support.”
“Gamers and game-makers were justifiably super-excited.”
Molyneux says that the world has changed since then, citing “tablet, mobile PCs and smartphones” and saying the manufacturers of such equipment are “refreshing their hardware on what feels like almost a weekly basis.”
He also mentions Valve, with the Steam Box.
The industry veteran says that the problem for Microsoft is how to justify its new console – to be revealed at 6pm tonight, UK time, in the face of a vastly different market.
“Its competition is no longer Sony and Nintendo, but rather Apple, Google and Samsung,” he added.
“When I used to work at Microsoft the key phrase that I used to hear bandied around was the next Xbox should be ‘input one’ on people’s living room screen. Nowadays I’m an independent designer and I just want the next Xbox to be a great gaming machine.”
“It should have great connectivity, so I can play spectacular games with my friends and be sold at a reasonable price, perhaps around £200.”
“That should be Microsoft’s goal rather than persisting in trying to make it a box for everyone.”